According to the MLA website's official definition, "MLA style is a system for documenting sources in scholarly writing. For over half a century, it has been widely adopted for classroom instruction and used throughout the world by scholars, journal publishers, and academic and commercial presses".
The MLA Handbook, 8th ed. "is designed specifically for students and their teachers. It explains the principles behind citing sources, provides instruction on the MLA’s system of documentation and offers recommendations about the mechanics of scholarly writing" (Modern Language Association website).
It is the style manual of choice primarily for research papers in arts, humanities, cultural studies, English, literature, and related study areas. One copy is available on the Library in Reserves at the iDesk for in-library use (two hours at a time).
The MLA Style Center is the free online companion to the MLA Handbook and the only authorized MLA style website. It is a useful source to get help with: